There are two cuisines that could convince me to vegetarian – Italian and Indian, and this recipe is a perfect example of why I have listed Indian as one of the two. Delicious, simple to prepare with ingredients you most likely have in your fridge and storecupboard and wonderfully evocative of Indian street food. Try different vegetables, different ratios of spices and various heat levels. And always double up on the mint and coriander chutney – there just never seems to be enough to go around!
To make the chutney, place all the ingredients except the yogurt in a blender. Blend until smooth, then stir through the yogurt and season to taste. Set aside.
Place the flours, spices, salt, fresh chilli, ginger and garlic in a large bowl and combine thoroughly. Add the water, little by little, until you have a lovely thick batter (you may need more or less water than 250ml). Stir through half the chopped coriander, the sliced onion, grated potato and cauliflower florets.
Heat the oil in a deep fat fryer to 170–180°C (325–350°F) (test the temperature by adding a teaspoon of the mixture – when the mixture bubbles, floats and turns golden brown in 45–60 seconds, you are good to go). Drop tablespoon-sized amounts of the mixture into the oil and fry for 2–3 minutes until golden brown and cooked all the way through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
Season with the chaat masala, a squeeze of lime juice and the Maldon salt, and scatter with the remaining chopped fresh coriander. Serve the piping hot pakoras with the chutney alongside.